CITIZEN VOICES® Should NH tax prescription opioids?
Sep 07, 2017
This year several states - including Massachusetts - have considered a tax on opioid-based prescription painkiller sales. The proposals vary from state to state, but can involve taxing some combination of manufacturers, producers, importers, and distributors. The taxes can be based on gross receipts, the number of pills, or the amount of addicting substances in the drugs. Some proposals have exceptions for opioids used for hospice and cancer patients. All of the proposals send the tax revenue to opioid addiction treatment or prevention. Read more about this issue.
"Should NH tax prescription opioids to fund addiction treatment?"
Participation: 230 participants gave 507 responses.
A total of 90% of those participating gave a ‘yes or no’ response to the question. The remaining 10% of participants engaged in the discussion but did not give a ‘yes or no’ response. In total, 230 individuals from New Hampshire contributed a total of 507 responses or reactions to this question. (Click here for details on our methodology.)
What Participants Said
No: A strong majority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 94%, were against taxing prescription opioids to fund addiction treatment programs.
- “No. People with chronic pain shouldn't be penalized because doctors over-prescribed.”
- “I don't know how taxing those who need it to pay for those who are addicted to it is fair.”
- “No. Many people need opioids for their pain. Nothing has been done for these people except make it harder and more expensive for these people to get their meds.”
Yes: A minority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 6%, were in favor taxing prescription opioid sales to fund addiction treatment programs.
- “Yes. The companies that peddle these drugs are directly responsible for the opiate epidemic in NH, and the US overall. Our fellow citizens have paid, and paid, and paid, it's time for these companies to pay as well.”
- “Yes, tax the pharmaceutical companies selling it.”
Other: As noted above, 10% of those participating did not give a ‘yes or no’ response, instead addressing their comments to related questions and issues. These included:
- Overdose drugs: “Eliminate Narcan for known abusers/recreational users.”
- Prescription policies: “Maybe doctors should do their job and get to the root of the issue instead of being so quick to hand out these highly addictive drugs that just mask the real problem.”
- Healthcare policy: “What if we just guaranteed healthcare and treatment as a human right?”
*Editor selection of actual participant quotes.